Man United encountered a truly unthinkable spell of bad luck in the first half against Liverpool, with Ander Herrera, Juan Mata and Jesse Lingard (himself a substitute) all going off with hamstring injuries before half time.
At around the same time players were dropping like flies, Rashford himself picked up an injury. He was given some painkillers and told to do what he could. There was no other option. Playing off one leg, the Englishman was hardly a presence in the second half.
Speaking after the game, Solskjaer expressed serious doubts over Rashford’s ability to play at Selhurst Park on Wednesday.
United came out of their clash with Liverpool unscathed in footballing terms – the visitors hardly created a chance – but the emotional and physical toil has exacted an unwelcome effect on the core of this team.
Five key players look likely to miss the clash with Roy Hodgson’s side: Rashford, Herrera, Mata, Lingard and Nemanja Matic (out for ‘a few weeks’) are all certainly out. Anthony Martial may well not recover in time either.
United will, as they say, have to dig very deep over the next few weeks.